Monday, March 14, 2011

More of Genesis B VI

Here is where the lines get crazy, swelling to enormous lengths, though appearing to be perfectly metrical. I paused over whether to render the long lines into long lines of my own, and have decided against necessitating it, preferring to allow the free verse rhythm to continue to dictate the line breaks. Some are just longer where the sense and sound require it, but it has not been a rule that they must be.


He had established these angels so blessedly—
but one among them he had made so strong, so mighty in his mind-thoughts.
God allowed him to wield such power, highest after himself in heavens’ realm.
He had shaped this one so splendidly—so beautiful was his flowering form
in the heavens granted him by the Lord of Armies. He was like the gleaming stars.
Praises of the Lord he should have wrought—
He should have loved his happiness in the heavens,
and he should have thanked the Lord for the rewards allotted him
in the shine, which he allowed his servant to steward for a long time. (252-58)

But this one turned himself away unto a worse thing.
He thought to heave up a struggle against the highest
Sovereign of Heaven who sits upon the holy throne.
Dear was he to our Lord—this could not be hidden from him
that his angel began to become overly proud,
heaving himself up against his Master, seeking hateful words
and boasting speech against him. He would serve God no longer.
He said that that his body was light and brilliant, beautiful and hue-bright.
Nor could he find it in his heart to serve the Lord as a vassal. (259-68a)

It seemed to this one that he possessed greater power and craft
than Holy God could have at muster. He spoke many words,
that angel over-proud. He pondered through his own skill
how he might create a stronger throne for himself,
higher in the heavens. He said that his mind had urged him
to construct a strengthened stronghold in the west and the north.
He said that it seemed doubtful to him to remain subordinate to God. (268b-77)

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